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Trait-State Models


Many psychological attributes have state as well as trait versions. This is most obvious for mood states. A classical example is Spielberger's state and trait anxiety. State anxiety is assessed via items in which the actual mood states have to be rated (‘right now I feel …’) whereas trait anxiety is assessed by items asking for the general mood state (‘in general I feel …’). However, it is interesting to note that the concept of states was introduced to personality research only during the 1960s and 1970s. By contrast, the concept of traits has guided personality research from its very beginning, even though the distinction between states and traits appears to be as old as thinking about human mind and behaviour.

Traditionally, some psychological properties are ...

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